I would assume almost everyone reading this knows how to “Google,” but can you use Google to search like a Google pro? Today I’m going to share a few googling tips that will change the way you search, optimize what you find, and maximize the usability you get from the content you searched for. You can thank me later, because I’m totally going to save your day.
Use quotes to search for an exact word or set of words that you are looking for. This is useful for searching for direct quotes and song lyrics. For example, if you’re wondering who said this quote, “If you can dream it, you can do it,” then put it in the search bar just like that (BONUS: That quote is from Walt Disney).
Put a dash before a word that you want to exclude in your search. If you’re looking for information about the phoenix–a mythical bird–but not the town in Arizona, then you can search for: phoenix -Arizona.
A tilde is this: ~ You can use a tilde before a term to include results with its synonyms. If you’re searching for desserts to bake for your upcoming Christmas party, then you can search for Christmas ~desserts.
Use site: to search within a specific website. For example, if you want to read about the all of the times that the New York Times talked about pandas then you would search for site:nytimes.com pandas.
Just as before, use link: to search for sites that link to the specified site url. This can be useful for monitoring your own site and seeing who’s talking about you. If we want to find all of the sites that have a link to Indiana University, then we would search for link:iub.iu.edu.
Use two periods between two numbers to express range of things like date, measurements, and prices. If you’re looking for songs that were released between 1970 and 1980, then you might want to search for song 1970..1980.
You can use related: to find sites that are related to the specified site. Time magazine would relate to a lot of other news sites, but to know specifically you would just type related:time.com. This might be useful if you are researching an organization and want to know who its competitors are.
These are just a couple of the many helpful methods of using Google search to find exactly what you need. You can read more about how the search works and the story behind Google’s search engine here. Before you leave, share a comment down below letting me know if you learned anything new today. What’s your favorite new way to search?